Customer data platforms (CDPs) collect data from both online and offline sources, then standardize and compile that data to create customer profiles.
Naturally, internal teams can work with customer profile data more easily when it’s well organized.
So whether an internal team works in sales, marketing, customer relationship management (CRM), finance, or something else, data must be categorized, accurate, and easy to access.
Why? That’s because RevOps teams can build better campaigns and enhance customer experiences — both of which improve loyalty and profits down the road.
[Related: The B2B customer data model: Why it matters and how to build one]
Table of Contents
What is a CDP?
To make matters crystal clear, CDP is a tech solution that helps businesses collect, organize, and unify customer data from various sources. When data is unified, RevOps can create a comprehensive and unified view of their customers.
CDPs essentially serve as a centralized hub for customer data, allowing companies to gain highly valuable insights and deliver personalized experiences across their marketing, sales, and customer service channels.
Here are some key aspects of a CDP:
- Data Collection: A CDP collects customer data from multiple sources, such as websites, mobile apps, CRM systems, social media platforms, email marketing tools, and more. It can capture a wide range of data, including demographic information, browsing behavior, purchase history, interactions, and preferences.
- Data Unification: A CDP’s primary function is to consolidate and unify customer data into individual customer profiles. It merges data from different sources, eliminates duplicates, resolves conflicts, and creates one single, comprehensive view of each customer. A unified customer profile allows businesses to have a holistic understanding of their customers’ interactions (and even their behaviors, too).
- Real-time Updates: A CDP will consistently update customer profiles in real-time (or in near real-time) to ensure all data remains accurate and up-to-date. As customers engage with various online touchpoints (think making a purchase or interacting with customer support), the CDP captures and incorporates these interactions into their respective profiles. This provides businesses with the most recent information about their customers.
- Segmentation and audience creation: With unified customer data, a CDP enables businesses to segment their customer base based on various attributes. This could be demographics, purchase history, engagement level, and much more. Segmentation allows companies to target highly specific customer groups with relevant content such as personalized marketing campaigns, tailored offers, and more.
- Insights and analytics: By leveraging your unified data, a CDP can give you valuable insights and analytics to help your business understand customer behavior. Same goes for their preferences and trends. This data-driven intelligence helps companies make more informed decisions while also optimizing their marketing strategies. Eventually RevOps can identify cross-selling (or upselling) opportunities, and thus improve customer experiences.
- Integration with other systems: A CDP is designed to integrate with other marketing and customer-facing systems such as email marketing tools, advertising platforms, CRM systems, and more. This integration helps data sharing to become seamless, ensuring that the unified customer profiles (and their relevant insights) are accessible across various departments within the organization.
- Privacy and Compliance: Customer data privacy and compliance are critical for a CDP. It’s vital that it adheres to privacy regulations (such as GDPR or CCPA) and provides robust security measures to protect all customer information. In general, a CDP will typically allow businesses to manage consent from their customers. And in turn, ensure they’re complying with data protection regulations.
In summary, a Customer Data Platform (CDP) is a powerful tool. By harnessing the power of a CDP, businesses can unlock and access valuable insights and drive better outcomes for their business.
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What are the CDP types?
The CDP market has evolved over the years. And each CDP type has its own unique capabilities.
Let’s look at the different types and what they offer.
Data-only CDPs are often referred to as stand-alone CDPs. They have the core components of standard CDPs in terms of features they must have.
This CDP type enables companies to collect data from multiple sources and provide a full, well-rounded view of their customers. A data-only CDP also allows teams to segment data to improve targeting for marketing campaigns. What’s more, it can connect the systems marketers currently have in place, then leverage the data in those systems.
Data-only CDPs are incredibly useful for marketers who want a range of accessible marketing solutions as well as an individualized view of their customers. They can quickly collect data, and data can exist outside silos. And marketers can still gather data from both offline and online sources without manual entry.
Additionally, stand-alone CDPs can retain all the data they receive and ingest from customers.
Data and analytics CDPs
CDPs that include more advanced analytics take data-only CDPs one step further.
Data and analytics CDPs offer grander visualization features for data, as well as reports that are pre-built. These combined help marketers analyze all on-hand data. They also help users better understand customer patterns and behaviors.
In addition, advanced data visuals help marketers share their thoughts with team members within a range of departments. These departments (e.g., sales, customer success, product) can then use customer profile data to help within their roles.
Data and analytics CDPs also offer predictive features that alert marketers of urgent matters. Marketers can automatically monitor changes in customer preferences and input updated data.
Data, analytics, and engagement CDPs
These CDPs allow users to automate their marketing campaigns and deliver tailored messaging through various channels. Users can also respond to customer preference changes in real time.
As the name suggests, data, analytics, and engagement CDPs combine customer experience optimization, analytics, and marketing automation. By doing so, they help marketers personalize campaigns per customer based on previous interactions and predicted behaviors.
For example, this CDP type allows users to personalize their banner and display ads with certain recommendations. RevOps marketers can also generate real-time messages to align the behaviors of customers spanning their site or platform journey from start to finish. Those real-life, quiet “getaway” aspects detect ongoing activities to influence purchase intent.
Image via Unsplash
Keep reading to discover the top 10 CDPs to help your business reach its goals.
Overall, Syncari is the most well-rounded B2B CDP. It’s not a CDP in the traditional sense, but it’s a tool for unifying customer data.
If you’re in B2B and you need to keep contacts, accounts, opportunities and many other standard and custom objects in sync across CRM, MAP, sales, CS, product tracking and finance tools, Syncari is your best bet.
That’s because it’s the first tool built with patented multi-directional sync, giving you the ability to rapidly unify your customer data strategy. This means a cohesive customer experience, happier Go-To-Market teams, and a lot less overhead.
[Compare Syncari vs. CDP]
If you want to personalize your customer journeys, Segment might be the most suitable platform for your business.
Segment provides companies with the foundation they need to support customer data, putting their best interest at the core of decisions. Using Segment, companies can receive, unify, and aim customer data into any system they want it stored in. This allows companies to have a more thorough understanding of their customers and create smooth, engaging, real-time experiences.
Thousands of companies — including Intuit and Instacart — use Segment to make time-sensitive decisions, fuel growth, and deliver high-quality customer experiences.
Currently an SAP company, Emarsys, is a customer engagement platform that empowers digital marketers and business owners. Thanks to its omnichannel capabilities, it’s built to speed outcomes.
Emarsys quickly aligns customer engagement strategies with business results, letting B2Bs accelerate time to value. It also offers superior one-on-one experiences and produces measurable results.
Thousands of leading brands use Emarsys because they trust it to deliver both predictable and revenue-generating outcomes. It also produces the highly personalized experiences that their clients and customers deserve.
If your business needs predictive segmentation, check out Optimove.
In a world where most customers buy from a brand only once and high growth comes primarily from returning customers, you need next-level retention.
Doing CRM marketing with Optimove allows hundreds of brands to achieve sustainable, customer-driven growth. You can scale your personalization with its AI and move away from manual, rule-based journey mapping — across any channel.
Brands such as Dollar Shave Club, Entain, Papa John’s, Penn National, and Staples use Optimove.
Sophisticated brands rely on Klaviyo to supercharge their growth.
Klaviyo is a growth marketing platform that helps RevOps deliver personalized experiences across owned marketing channels like email, SMS, in-app notifications, and web.
Brands have made billions in revenue through Klaviyo in the past year alone. This is the result of creating deeper, higher-value customer relationships.
Planhat is a CDP designed to give insights, manage workflows, and drive positive customer experiences.
It also supports hundreds of modern, global tech companies by offering customer-centric business insights. And that’s what drives customer success and customer lifetime value.
So whether you primarily work with CSM, the C-suite, or something else, you can unify your customer data and set goals that enhance the customer journey. For starters, you can consider playbooks, automation, and collaboration.
Amperity is a CDP designed for marketing, analytics, and IT leaders. The platform helps transform customer data into fuel for growth and trust.
In fact, it helps many of the world’s most popular brands make smart decisions and deliver personalized customer experiences. It does so in three ways:
- Unifying scattered data into customer profiles
- Offering strategic insights and segmentation tools
- Making data accessible business-wide for elevated service
Amperity offers a patented solution with enterprise-grade speed, scale, and security. And in this new e-commerce era, being “good enough” doesn’t cut it concerning business health or consumer experiences. Customers expect businesses to respect their transaction data and to use it to better inform their future buying experiences.
The commerce experience cloud, Bloomreach, supports brands in delivering customer journeys that are highly personalized. Several products and features including search driven by AI, headless CMS, marketing automation tools, discovery, engagement, and CDP tools.
When these tools are used together, they unify both customer and product data, which drives revenue. Bloomreach serves hundreds of brands spanning the globe including Albertsons, Puma, and Bosch.
Insider is a platform for individualized, cross-channel experiences. It lets enterprise marketers connect customer data across numerous channels and predict customer behavior via AI tools. These tools can also create individualized customer experiences.
RevOps marketers use Insider to deliver high-quality customer experiences on channels such as web, web push, apps, SMS, messaging, email, and ads.
10. Action IQ
Action IQ brings order to customer experience chaos.
Its customer experience hub empowers teams to explore and act on customer data. Action IQ concurrently helps technical teams extend and enhance existing investment, ranging from using new tech systems to managing data governance to improving costs and performance measures.
Enterprises such as Autodesk, M&T Bank, The New York Times, Neiman Marcus, and Hertz use Action IQ’s CX Hub to drive growth through more fulfilling customer experiences.
More CDPs to consider
Do you feel like you still haven’t found the CDP you need? Check out these other top CDPs:
- Simon Data
- Treasure Data
- Tealium AudienceStream
[Related: What is Salesforce CDP?]
Use Syncari as your go-to CDP
If you’re ready to rely on a top-rated, patent-owned CDP, contact Syncari.
We offer dozens of single synapse and tool-pairing integrations that streamline your workflow automation.
To get started, sign up for a free 30-day trial or request a custom Syncari demo today.